Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:


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Statutory Address:

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Wiltshire (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:
ST 93340 87379



ST9387 MARKET CROSS 758-1/2/248 (North East side) 18/01/49 Abbey House and attached rear wall


House. Late C13 undercroft of the reredorter to the Abbey (qv), largely rebuilt c1540 by William or son James Stumpe, upgraded late C16, C17 agricultural SW range demolished late C19, extended 1920s by architect Harold Brakespear. MATERIALS: roughcast limestone rubble with limestone dressings, ashlar lateral and ridge stacks and a stone slate cross-gabled roof. STYLE: half H-shaped plan with extruded corners to front, and C20 SE extension. EXTERIOR: 2 storeys, undercroft and attic; 8-window range. The principal elevation has gables with roll-top coping and ball finials to outer wings, the left-hand one projecting further, and centre, with a full-height gabled stair tower in the right-hand re-entrant, across from a left-hand 2-storey entrance porch with raking roof; drip courses to the ground-floor, and the first floor of the stair tower. The doorway has a 4-centre arch with sunken spandrels with coat of arms of James Stumpe and Baunton, and boarded door; 5-, 4-, 3- and 2-light mullion windows, with transoms to the ground-floor centre and left-hand wing, have reserved chamfers and cavetto mouldings to leaded metal casements, and labels. The left-hand end return is a 3-window range with a central gable and smaller gable to the right with square stacks, an early C20 porch and doorway, with 2-light mullion windows at either end, and to the left of and above the porch, and a label to the attic window. Rear elevation has outer gables and a narrower gable to the right, fenestrated as the front; the undercroft exposed to this side, formerly with buttresses, and 6 one-light windows with 2-centre arches, splayed reveals and hoods, with soffit holes for former stanchions. Similarly-styled C20 cross wing is gabled front and rear, with a 1-window linking section and left-hand doorway. Gable stacks to both the C16 end gables, C16 ridge stack behind the stair tower, and to the C20 range. The C16 SE gable has a sundial at the top. INTERIOR: details include an undercroft of 4 and 3 bays, 2 bays wide, with springing of an Early English rib vault and octagonal columns, fine cinquefoil rere arches, a C16 bressumer for a SW corner cooking range, and C15 plank door.

Ground floor has beams with tongue stops, an oak newel winder stair in the right-hand stair tower, NE parlour with oak panelling and overmantel, strapwork and caryatids, with coat of arms above of the Ivy family, living in the house c1670, and a plaster frieze in front W room; first-floor over the hall has a right-hand fireplace with broach stops; roof with collar trusses and tenoned purlins. The NE parlour has oak panelling and overmantel, strapwork and caryatids. SUBSIDIARY FEATURES: attached rubble retaining wall extends approx 30m from NW corner, curving to south where it becomes progressively lower. HISTORICAL NOTE: possibly the former Dorter and Reredorter of the Abbey, built by Abbot William (1260-96). Rebuilt after the dissolution by Stumpe, who was a prosperous clothier and died 1552, or his son Sir James. Probably a walled forecourt to the S which in 1636 contained around 60 houses. An agricultural wing added to SW gable C17 and with the former E wing were demolished late 1920s. Rear wall of Abbey House is along line of town wall, and a very short stub projecting from W side is probably C13. (Stirling D: Secular medieval buildings in Malmesbury, Wilts, 1150-1547: 1986-: 7; Abbey House, Malmesbury. Report: 1991-; Victoria History of the Counties of England: Crowley DA: A History of Wiltshire: 134; The Buildings of England: Pevsner N: Wiltshire: London: 1963-: 464).

Listing NGR: ST9334487380


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
Crowley, B A, The Victoria History of the County of Wiltshire, (1991), 134
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: Wiltshire, (1963), 464
Stirling, D, Secular Medieval Buildings in Malmesbury Wiltshire 1150-1547, (1986)
Report on Abbey House Malmesbury, (1991)


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

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Date: 12 Oct 1999
Reference: IOE01/00304/09
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr G Williams. Source Historic England Archive
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